Thursday, March 08, 2012

Ministry Board Member Recognized

TULSA - When disaster strikes, or there's an officer in need, you'll find a Tulsa police corporal who is making a difference.

In a quiet corner of Tulsa Police Department headquarters, you'll find Cpl. Dan Ward hard at work.

He's dedicated 17 years to the department, ensuring TPD's more than 600 officers have the uniforms and equipment and the training they need to keep them safe behind the wheel.

But it wasn't enough.

"We found out that there are 225,000 officers here in the United States that don't have ballistic vests issued to them by their communities," he said.

Ward joined the Vest for Life program to gather bulletproof vests for officers across the country. A total of 2,400 have been distributed to date.

Ward's used vacation time and spent thousands of dollars of his own money to travel as far as the Philippines to train and equip officers there.

Then massive tornadoes struck Alabama last April.

"When we got there we found most of the officers were working in civilian clothes because their houses got destroyed, their uniforms destroyed, work equipment was gone," he said.

One day after the tornadoes hit, Ward and his partners in "10-4 Ministries" were on scene with donated equipment and supplies to help their fellow officers.

"When we found out they were without uniforms we drove to the nearest uniform supplier and bought uniforms so they could carry on with taking care of their communities," he said.

Just weeks later, when the massive tornado hit Joplin, Ward was on scene again with a contingent of Tulsa police.

While Dan Ward fulfills his daily duties, he's already rounding up supplies for the next natural disaster.

He'll tell you, he's just doing his job.

"I don't think that I'm going to go out there and change the world but I do know that if I put my heart into everything I do that I can make a small difference for whatever person I'm dealing with right then," he said. "And if we would all have that attitude, we could change the world."

The Downtown Tulsa Rotary Club recently honored Ward with the Above and Beyond Award.

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